South Callaway community raises more than $7,500 for a fifth grade student

3 months 3 weeks 2 days ago Thursday, December 12 2019 Dec 12, 2019 Thursday, December 12, 2019 3:00:00 AM CST December 12, 2019 in News
By: Shade Bullock, KOMU 8 Reporter
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MOKANE - Christopher Sanford will now be able to move around more easily, after teachers at South Callaway School District raised more than $7,500 for his family to get a wheelchair accessible van.

Sanford is a 5th grader in the district with a progressive form of Muscular Dystrophy. 

Teacher Danielle Smoot said that after making a GoFundMe, word spread like wildfire and soon enough, the entire community was involved. 

"It was all of the teachers in the elementary and throughout the district and it was a lot of people in the community who put their brains together to think of ways we can support Christopher and get enough money to help Christopher meet his needs," she said. 

Smoot said Sanford should be getting his van this week or weekend. She said he is very excited.

According to the GoFundMe, Sanford was diagnosed with muscular dystrophy in second grade. He went from running in first grade, to using a walker in second grade, to being completely wheelchair bound in third grade. Now in fifth grade, he has lost muscle strength in his upper body.

Smoot said she noticed the Sanford family struggling to transport their son in their non-wheelchair accessible van and decided to do something about it. 

"We all care about each other," she said. "We care very much about the needs of our students and we need to make sure their needs are met so that we can help them educationally."

When asked what message she hopes this sends to other people, Smoot said to put yourself in someone else's shoes. 

"No matter what their predicament is, think about them and think about ways to help," she said. "Giving is a great trait to have."

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